Great Longstone author Sue Hepworth has recently released her fifth novel, Even When They Know You, a story or friendship and loss in later life and reflections on grief set against the landscape of the Peak District.
Former psychologist Sue, 69, said: “It is about a woman searching for happiness after her best friend had died. It’s very different from my previous books, which had comedy touches.”
It took three years to write, much longer than Sue’s usual time of 12 months, as she wrestled with how much personal experience to use.
She said: “My best friend died four years ago, and it is said to have as great an impact as losing a family member.
“There is a lot of fiction in the book, because obviously it needs a plot, but one thing that is real is the setting of the Monsal Trail.”
She added: “I was going there a lot at the time, noticing things more, and I found a particular place in a ravine which was so peaceful I could go there and sit for hours, and it really helped.”
The therapeutic effects of being in nature play out in the book through a series of journal entries which show the protagonist coming to terms with her loss.
Sue said: “The response from readers has been really positive so far. I think people feel there isn’t enough writing about relationships between older people.”
The book is available from online retailers and at Hassop Station.